September 3, 2014

Posts on events

Subscribe to this feed Subscribe to this feed

 

Tuesday, December 22, 2009 - 11:46 AM

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other members of Congress got a lot of good advice recently when representatives of The Concord Coalition’s fiscal advisory councils visited Capitol Hill to present their recommendations.

The basic message: Elected officials must make some dramatic changes to put the country on a more responsible fiscal course, protect our economic future and avoid saddling our children and grandchildren with massive debt.

Advisory council members from across the country -- Atlanta, Iowa, Milwaukee, Northern California and Philadelphia -- met with members of Congress and their staffs as part of The Concord Coalition’s National Conference of Fiscal Stewardship this month in Washington. The Fiscal Advisory Council of Northern Virginia had already met with several members of Congress in the fall. Representatives from the University of Denver, where the Fiscal Stewardship Project featured a special student engagement initiative this year, also attended the conference and met with elected officials.

In the conference’s opening...

Monday, October 26, 2009 - 4:40 PM

The Concord Coalition’s Fiscal Wake-Up Tour made its second stop in Denver on Thursday, drawing around 700 people of all ages for a day-long collection of events. 

The message of fiscal responsibility found receptive audiences as college students and others heard experts discuss the country's long-term fiscal problems and some possible solutions. The sense of concern in the audience was palpable, as was the frustration with government officials who have failed to take effective action.

Early in the day, nearly 300 Colorado college students participated in “Paying for America,” a student summit held at the the Cable Center on the University of Denver campus. (You can watch the summit panels here.)

They heard from a collection of budget experts, student activists, and filmmakers including: ...

Friday, August 28, 2009 - 9:52 AM

Perhaps even more than most of Concord’s Fiscal Wake-Up Tour programs, the one in Maine this week underscored the need for a really big alarm clock.

The recession has sliced into the government's revenue while putting its spending on steroids. Concord Executive Director Robert L. Bixby offered the Wake-Up Tour audience of more than 200 in Kennebunkport a troubling factoid: last month’s federal deficit of $180 billion was larger than the deficit for all of 2007.

And on the same day, the Obama administration released a grim projection of $9 trillion in deficits over the next decade, $2 trillion higher than its previous estimate. When this was reported in Kennebunkport, fretful murmurs swept through the room. 

Even the $9 trillion figure is probably too optimistic, according to Concord’s analysis. So to borrow an analogy from David M. Walker, president and CEO of The Peter G. Peterson Foundation: Watch out for the "tsunami" that’s on the way.

Then there’s the current status of the health care debate: High interest in new government services and assistance, considerably less enthusiasm for proposals to pay for them. And not all that...

Friday, August 28, 2009 - 9:50 AM

Speakers in the Fiscal Wake-Up Tour sometimes worry that all the bad news they are delivering may be leave audiences too discouraged about the country’s future. Too much gloom and doom, after all, could cause some people to simply throw up their hands in despair.

But while people who attended this week’s Wake-Up program in Kennebunkport, Maine, found the presentations sobering, they also seemed engaged and in many cases energized to seek solutions.

That was reflected both in the wide-ranging questions during the program and in comments from some audience members afterwards.

“The program was very informative; it’s great that we can do this,” said Jonathan T.E. Courtney, assistant Republican leader in the Maine Senate. He strongly agreed with the calls for Democrats and Republicans to cooperate in finding solutions to the nation’s fiscal problems: “We just can’t sustain this level of spending.”

Such cooperation in Maine, he said, enabled legislators there to begin to deal constructively with difficulties in the state budget this year: “We decided to engage Democrats rather than throw bombs.”

Frank Gallagher, a Portland Democrat and Maine director for Americans United for Change, also liked the program and agreed with much of what he heard there. Rising federal deficits, he said, were a critical...

Monday, April 20, 2009 - 12:45 PM

In line with the trend of civic-engagement and activism among youth, students at The University of Pennsylvania are gearing up for a federal finance awareness week to bring focus to our ever deepening fiscal hole. This isn't the first time we've seen motivated students who understand the stakes, impress their peers and silence the skeptics, but this is the latest example of why I'm proud to work with my generation.  

After being inspired during a class conducted in collaboration with the Concord Coalition, and with some motivating outrage from what they discovered about the country's fiscal affairs, a group of students went above and beyond the call of duty and academics to start a student group and website called Pound-It.org.

Further proving that there is more to their industry and ambition than getting a good grade, these students have kept their momentum and work ethic going, even after receiving their A's, and are planning a week-long celebration of their commitment to educating their peers about fiscal responsibility.

This outreach campaign will include flyering the campus, 550 twenty billion dollar bills (representing our debt) on the college green, as well as speaking events and a public screening of I.O.U.S.A.

The following events are open...

Friday, December 19, 2008 - 5:34 PM

Many of you have heard about the documentary movie I.O.U.S.A. For this blog post, I would like to borrow just the first three letters of this catchy title as I thank the wonderful Concord Coalition volunteers of the Midwest: I.O.U.

Since I began working as the Midwest Regional Director for the Concord Coalition in July 2008, I have continuously been impressed with the vigor and enthusiasm demonstrated by citizens and professionals of the great Midwest who volunteer for The Concord Coalition and those who offer their support of our initiatives in their community, state, and across the nation. To each of you: I.O.U.!  I owe you many thanks and want to publicly recognize your contributions to Concord and to my work for Concord in the field.

Let me provide Tabulation blog readers a few examples of the outpouring of participation and interest I’ve received in my Midwest region to illustrate why I.O.U.:

  • An Illinois professional has decided to give his time, expertise, and money to The Concord Coalition in 2009. In his own words:  “I am increasingly alarmed by the growing unrecognized governmental indebtedness at all levels, and believe it is now my time to try to devote some serious...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008 - 11:37 AM

Many of our reports from the field over the next few weeks will be about screenings we are doing all over the country for I.O.U.S.A.. The primary idea behind the screenings is to reach colleges who weren't in session when the film was originally released and other locations where the movie hasn't been able to show.

Sunday night's screening of I.O.U.S.A. at Columbia University is a great example of why I love my job. The Conservative Forum packed almost 75 people into a basement to watch the movie on a pull-down projector screen. The audience was hooked, and I had to laugh as they stood up and swayed in their seats to read a subtitle or name at the bottom of the screen (we weren't able to swing stadium seating rental in the basement).

At the end of the film people got ready to leave, but when we announced that the director, Patrick Creadon, was there to answer questions, most stayed. After a good Q&A session, Patrick sat down with a pen and a stack of I.O.U.S.A. posters. About 20 people lined up to get his autograph and gush about the film. I even had a number of people come up and ask how they can set up more screenings A.S.A.P.!  

As if the night wasn't already a huge success, I had arranged to meet with a group of dedicated New York City Concord Coalition volunteers after the...